OK, I’ll admit it. I hate making New Year’s resolutions. Winter is the time when I feel like hibernating, not getting out and doing new things. However, now that February is drawing to a close and Daylight Savings Time will soon lengthen our days, I feel like it may be time to set some goals that will help me improve how I look and feel. I’m not planning on losing 30 pounds or running a marathon, but on actions that will improve my health, both physical and mental, and make me feel better about myself. Low pain, big gain! If you’d like to join me in my spring equinox resolutions, let’s get started.
My first resolution is deceptively simple, and doesn’t cost much, if anything: drink 6 to 8 glasses of water each day. Water is great for your body; it flushes out toxins; fills you up when you feel hungry; doesn’t have lots of empty calories, additives, or preservatives; and just helps you to feel better. If you’re not a fan of plain water, try adding a slice of lemon, lime, orange, or–my favorite–cucumber to add a hint of flavor. Or try sparkling water, like San Pellegrino. Start with 2 to 3 glasses and work your way up to 6 to 8. You will notice a difference quickly! Some women prefill Ball jars with flavored waters so they are ready and waiting for them in the fridge when they feel thirsty or need a drink to take along.
My next resolution is to eat close to the source. This means eating foods as close to their origin as you can. A baked potato is great; French fries, not so great. An apple is faboo—apple tarts, not so much. Opt for fresh fruit and veggies when you can, and stay away from processed foods with additives and chemicals to the extent you are able. You’ll feel better and your body will appreciate it.
My third resolution is one that I talk about a lot, but still have a hard time doing: keep moving. As little as 30 minutes of movement a day–walking, running, yoga, playing sports, doing chores–can help get you fit and keep you fit. It doesn’t have to be all at once—break it into 10 minute chunks if that works for you. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, carry groceries in from the car one bag at a time, walk your dog a little further each day. Sitting too much is not good for you, so if you are desk bound, take a break at least every hour and move around.
My next resolution is to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep a night. Your body rejuvenates during sleep, so if you get too few hours of rest, you may find yourself cranky, out of sorts, and feeling poorly. Too much sleep and you may start to put on pounds. So, I’ll aim to get 7-8 hours each night whenever possible.
My final resolution is to wear sunscreen every day. I have purchased a good moisturizer that is SPF 30 and will use it on my face and neck every day. When the weather gets warmer, I’ll look for a body moisturizer with a strong SPF rating and use that on my body every day, too. Sunscreen is for always, not just in the summer time. The winter sun is just as strong if nor more so, especially when reflected it reflects off snow of ice. I’m hoping these resolutions will take me from spring into summer feeling better and looking good.